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If you’re looking for an easy-to-make dessert that is sure to impress your guests, try these salted caramel chocolate mini tarts! Made with homemade French pastry dough, a rich chocolate ganache filling, and drizzled with salted caramel, they’re a real sweet treat.
Although I adore savory recipes, I also have a real soft spot for desserts! They can make a meal so special, and when I entertain at home, I always make sure to whip up something sweet to finish everything off. Some of my best-loved desserts include these mini pumpkin pies for fall, Texas sheet cake with pecans, and my Gramma’s rhubarb crisp.
The base of today’s recipe for salted caramel chocolate mini tarts is my homemade French pastry dough. I was inspired by American chef David Lebovitz, who has made Paris his home. He also has a recipe for a chocolate tart, which I modified and made with a chocolate ganache and a drizzle of salted caramel.
David explains “This tart is a great combination of silky-smooth chocolate with a dense bite. The caramel gives it a chewy texture and the unsweetened chocolate counterbalances any sweetness.”
As soon as I took a bite of this salted caramel chocolate tart recipe, I was hooked! It’s since become a staple at my dinner parties. When I tell you this dessert is a crowd pleaser, I’m not exaggerating. The fun single servings are also really nice. Everyone gets to enjoy the perfect amount!
INGREDIENT NOTES AND SUBSTITUTIONS
- Sugar – Use granulated sugar for your mini tarts. It serves as the starter for your homemade salted caramel sauce.
- Espresso – I love using espresso in desserts! It adds an even richer flavor to the chocolate, and I prefer it over filtered coffee.
- Butter – Opt for unsalted butter for your mini chocolate tarts. Make sure to bring it to room temperature before getting started.
- Salt – All you need is a pinch!
- Chocolate – You’ll use a variety of bittersweet or semisweet and unsweetened chocolate for your salted caramel chocolate tart recipe.
- Eggs – I use a method called tempering in order to add the eggs to the mini tarts. It involves diluting them with hot liquid — chocolate in this case — before adding the rest of the ingredients.
- All-Purpose Flour – Used as a thickener.
- Vanilla Extract – For more added warmth and sweetness!
- Mini Tart Shells – I love my homemade version, also inspired by Chef David. Make sure to pre-bake them.
- Salted Caramel Sauce – For your sweet caramel drizzle. Again, use my recipe to make it yourself!
HOW TO MAKE SALTED CARAMEL CHOCOLATE MINI TARTS
1. Make The Caramel. First, preheat your oven to 350° F. Using a Dutch oven or a large heavy-duty saucepan, spread the sugar in an even layer on the bottom. Melt the sugar over medium heat until the edges liquefy and start to caramelize — it should be a deep amber color.
2. Add The Espresso. Turn off the heat and carefully stir the espresso into the caramel. The mixture will bubble and steam, so be sure to stir constantly so that it doesn’t stick.
3. Incorporate The Other Ingredients. If you notice that your caramel begins to harden, place it over low heat and stir gently. Add the butter and salt, then stir until everything melts together. Add in both chocolates and stir until smooth.
4. Temper The Eggs. Beat the eggs in a large bowl with a whisk. Slowly add the hot chocolate caramel mixture and whisk vigorously. Continue to add the caramel and chocolate in a steady drizzle and incorporate thoroughly. Add the flour and vanilla extract.
5. Bake. Pour the mixture into the pre-baked mini tart shells. Bake for 15 minutes, or until the filling begins to rise and crack at the edges. The center should be jiggly — don’t overbake!
6. Garnish & Serve. Remove the mini chocolate tarts from the oven and allow them to cool completely. Garnish each mini salted caramel chocolate tart with the homemade salted caramel sauce linked above and serve!
Can I Make A Large Salted Caramel Chocolate Tart Instead?
Absolutely! Use my recipe for French pastry dough and pre-bake it in a large pie dish instead of the mini tart shells. Double the filling recipe, then follow the instructions as directed above and on the recipe card below. I’ve prepared it this way a few times and was thrilled with the results.
Should I Use Bittersweet Or Semisweet Chocolate For Chocolate Mini Tarts?
It’s all about preference. If you like very sweet desserts, opt for semisweet. If you want your dessert to have a bit more bite, you can use bittersweet.
Should I Serve My Mini Tarts Cold?
My mini chocolate tarts are best served at room temperature. I find that the chocolate filling tastes better this way, as well as the tart shells. That said, you can store them in an airtight container in the fridge if you have any leftovers. They will keep for 5-6 days. Enjoy chilled or allow them to come to room temperature before digging in.
Salted Caramel Chocolate Mini Tarts
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Spread the sugar in an even layer in the bottom of a large, heavy-duty saucepan or Dutch oven. Melt the sugar over moderate heat until the edges liquefy and being to caramelize.
- Once the sugar is melted, it will caramelize rather quickly and turn a deep amber, turn off the heat and stir in the espresso. This will bubble up and steam quite a bit, stir constantly.
- If the caramel hardens in places, stir it gently over low heat until smooth again. Then add the butter, salt, and stir until melted. Then stir in both chocolates until smooth.
Temper the Eggs
- Using a whisk, beat the eggs in a large bowl. Slowly add some of the hot chocolate caramel and whisk vigorously. Continue to pour the hot chocolate caramel mixture in a steady drizzle, whisking vigorously to incorporate. Next, whisk in the flour and vanilla extract.
- Pour the mixture into the pre-baked, 5-inch round tart shells, then bake for 15 minutes (just until the filling starts to rise and crack at the edges but the center is still jiggly). Do not over bake.
- Remove from oven and let cool completely before garnishing with caramel drizzle.
The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.